Udayavni Special

Kerala govt moves SC against HC order increasing number of pilgrims to Sabarimala temple


PTI, Dec 24, 2020, 1:31 PM IST

New Delhi: The Kerala government has moved the Supreme Court challenging the state high court’s verdict which had directed it to increase the number of pilgrims to the historic Sabarimala temple to 5,000 per day, saying it will put a “great strain” on police personnel and health officials in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The state government, in its petition filed in the apex court against the December 18 judgement of the Kerala High Court, has said the state had constituted a high-level committee headed by the chief secretary which had set the number of pilgrims per day to 2,000 on weekdays and 3,000 on weekends respectively.

It said that to control the COVID-19 pandemic during the Sabarimala temple festival season between December 20 and January 14 next year, the state had constituted the high-level committee to consider all aspects and to fix the number of pilgrims who can be permitted per day to visit the shrine.

It said the committee, in a meeting convened on December 14, considered the report submitted by revised health advisory of the Health and Family Welfare Department and enhanced the number of pilgrims per day to 2,000 on weekdays and 3,000 on weekends.

“The high court disposed of the writ petitions filed by some of the respondents herein, with a direction to the government to increase the number of pilgrims per day to 5,000. The enhancement of pilgrims was done by the high court without considering any proper report or other documents. The number of police officials, health officials and pilgrims affected by COVID-19 in the Sabarimala temple so far is on the higher side,” the state government said in its petition, filed through advocate G Prakash.

It said that entry to the temple is controlled by a virtual queue managed by police and pilgrims are tested for COVID-19 before allowing them to enter the temple.

“Increase in the number of pilgrims will put police personnel and officials of the health department in great strain and difficulty in controlling the pilgrims of this magnitude,” it said.

“It is also reported on the media that a new COVID-19 virus was detected in England and considering the spread of new virus, Government of India cancelled all flights to and fro from England. This being the situation the Government of Kerala, seeks urgent interference of this court with the impugned judgment to control the spread of COVID-19 during the Sabarimala festival season,” it said.

As an interim relief, the plea has sought ex-parte stay of the high court order which was passed on a batch of petitions including those seeking direction to enhance the permissible number of pilgrims per day.

Earlier this year, the apex court had constituted a nine-judge Constitution bench to deliberate upon issues pertaining to the scope of freedom of religion as also of judicial scrutiny into “essential religious practices” of separate “religious denominations”

These issues have arisen out of a judgement in the Sabarimala temple case.

The nine-judge bench has been set up after a five-judge bench, by a 3:2 majority verdict, had referred the matter to a larger bench while examining the review petition filed against the historic September 28, 2018 judgement which had allowed women of all ages to enter the Sabarimala temple.

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

My statement on illegal quarrying has been misunderstood: BSY

National Girl Child Day: PM Modi hails accomplishments of nation’s daughters in various fields

COVID-19: India records 14,849 fresh cases, 155 more fatalities

Puttur: Youth forcibly marries, abducts bethrothed girl

M’luru: Three vehicles damaged after peepal tree near Venkataramana Temple collapses

Sullia: Tree park honouring Salumarada Timmakka opened

India working on 5th-gen fighter, some 6th-gen capabilities will be incorporated in it: IAF chief


Related Articles More

National Girl Child Day: PM Modi hails accomplishments of nation’s daughters in various fields

India to display key military assets on R-Day; contingent of Bangladesh excited to march down Rajpath

Aviation sector workers be vaccinated on priority after health workers: MoCA to MoHFW

Dubai-based Indian student makes PM Modi’s special portrait as Republic day gift

Seven more states to administer Covaxin from next week: Health Ministry

MUST WATCH

The lorry driver’s disaster on the national highway: Hundreds of lives saved | Udayavani

Compol appeals people to share info regarding any untoward developments through Whatsapp

Mangaluru: Police arrest nine students for alleged ragging

Remembering Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose | Asha Raghuvamshi

Inter-state Ganja smuggling racket busted: 7 held, 44.630 kgs of Marijuana seized

Latest Additions

My statement on illegal quarrying has been misunderstood: BSY

National Girl Child Day: PM Modi hails accomplishments of nation’s daughters in various fields

Motorists move in darkness due to non-operating lightposts on BC Road-Panemangalore h’way

India to display key military assets on R-Day; contingent of Bangladesh excited to march down Rajpath

Aviation sector workers be vaccinated on priority after health workers: MoCA to MoHFW

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.